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Why Aren’t More People Buying Electric Cars?

The idea of owning an electric vehicle is gaining traction but significant concerns are preventing consumers from becoming converts.

buying electric cars

A recent AAA survey of electric vehicle owners found that nearly all (96%) would buy or lease another the next time they were in the market for a new car. And word has spread: Sales of EVs through the first five months of 2021 grew 150% compared to the same period last year. Even President Joe Biden voiced his support of the green technology by setting a national goal for EVs to make up half of all new vehicle sales by 2030.

Certainly, there could be no better seals of approval. Yet while buying electric cars has grown exponentially over the years, it still lags far behind that of traditional gas-powered cars. As of 2020, there were nearly 1.8 million EVs registered in the U.S., according to the Pew Research Center, three times as many as in 2016. That may seem like an impressive growth until you compare it to the 280 million cars in operation across the country. Indeed, EVs represented just 2% of the new cars purchased in the U.S. in 2020.

“Although 40 million Americans have shown interest in buying electric for their next car, actual adoption is happening at a much slower rate,” said Greg Brannon, AAA’s director of automotive engineering and industry relations.

The gap between interest in buying electric car and owning an electric car begs the question: What are the hurdles preventing the widespread adoption of EVs, and, more importantly, are they capable of being cleared?

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Upfront Cost

There’s no getting around it: buying electric cars costs more, at least initially, than gas-powered cars. 

The high cost is largely a byproduct of the expensive process of manufacturing EV batteries. Fortunately, battery prices are dropping precipitously. Bloomberg found the average cost to be around $130/kWh as of late 2020, whereas they cost more than $1,000 just 10 years ago. The news outlet predicts batteries will drop to an average of $100/kWh by 2023. This number would represent an important milestone because at $100/kWh per battery, Bloomberg estimates that EVs can be manufactured and sold to a mass market at the same price as gas-powered cars.

The better news for potential EV owners is that the cost of the vehicles is already coming down. The average transaction price for all new vehicles in June 2021 was $42,282, according to Kelley Blue Book. The average transaction price for all electric vehicles was $49,766.

If consumers are able to overcome the initial higher costs, they should be able to make up that difference, if not surpass it, as EV ownership generally costs less than gas-powered cars. The money starts to come back in the form of tax credits. A federal tax credit of up to $7,500 per EV may be available depending on the model of EV as well as the owner’s tax liability. State governments also offer varying tax credits and other incentives that can further reduce the cost.

EV drivers will see additional savings over the lifetime of their ownership, as these vehicles cost less to both maintain and operate. (EVs don’t require oil changes or air-filter replacements, for example.) AAA research found, if maintained according to the automakers’ recommendations, annual EV maintenance costs $330 less than that of gas-powered cars. Then comes the all important factor of “fuel.” While electricity does cost money, it pales in comparison to the price of gasoline. As such, the power required to drive 15,000 miles per year in an EV costs an average of $546, according to AAA, less than half the price of the amount of gas required to travel the same distance.

All told, AAA found the total cost of an EV over five years and 75,000 miles of driving to be less than $600 more than owning a comparable gas-powered car.

buying electric cars

Lucid Air

Range Anxiety

A recent automotive survey conducted by Deloitte listed driving range to be the biggest concern amongst U.S. consumers regarding all-battery-powered electric vehicles.

This is one problem that, although valid, shouldn’t pose the level of concern that it does. While limited driving range used to be a major issue — not too long ago, it was difficult to find an EV that could travel more than 100 miles on a single charge — it’s becoming less so with each passing year. Today, there are numerous models that can travel 200 miles. Tesla cars, including the best-selling Model 3, feature batteries capable of more than 300 miles. The soon-to-be-released Lucid Air boasts a range of 500 miles.

Range anxiety is likely an effect of drivers simply overestimating how much power they really need. The previous year’s Deloitte survey found the majority of consumers expected EVs to travel more than 200 miles per full charge even though they traveled an average of 27 miles per day. “Range anxiety is generally only a concern to people who don’t drive electric,” said Anja van Niersen, CEO of European EV charging network Allego.

Be that as it may, driving range is still an issue for those who don’t have access to readily available EV chargers, which points to a much more significant barrier to widespread electric car adoption.

Lack of Infrastructure

The lack of public charging stations may just be the most significant hurdle to the widespread adoption of EVs in the U.S. The problem is most notable in two areas. First is with potential EV owners who don’t live in a single-family home, where most EV drivers charge their vehicles. Those who live in apartments don’t have this luxury and therefore have to charge their vehicle elsewhere. This can become a rather burdensome chore after time. Furthermore, apartment property owners are often hesitant at installing such infrastructure as it may be cost prohibitive.

Allowing the use of common outlets also poses problems. Because EV charging consumes more energy than most other residential uses, property managers would likely want residents to pay the electrical costs. This would require devising a way to monitor how much power is being used by each resident.

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Regardless of living situations, public infrastructure is needed for all EV owners looking to make long-distance trips. There are more than 43,000 public EV charging stations in the United States, according to the Department of Energy. (If that seems like a large number, consider that there are nearly three times the number of gas stations.) But a 2019 study by the International Council on Clean Transportation found that this is just a fraction of the infrastructure needed. It estimated that 10,000 more charging stations will be required by 2025 to support EVs traveling between cities.

While EV infrastructure has a long way to go, local and federal governments appear committed to the trek. In 2019, two-thirds of U.S. mayors voiced their support of improving infrastructure even at the cost of additional parking space. More recently, a proposed trillion-dollar federal infrastructure bill is allocating $7.5 billion to fund the installation of 500,000 public charging stations across the country. If enacted into law, the legislation would be the federal government’s first-ever investment in EV chargers and, maybe, a sign of things to come.

Interested in purchasing an electric – or gas-powered – vehicle? Let AAA help get you in the perfect car for the right price with a low-interest auto loan.

What are your thoughts on electric vehicles? Are you considering owning an electric car the next time you’re in the market? What might prevent you? Let us know in the comments below.

Comments
  • Peter Y.

    One other consideration might be the amount of time it takes to charge an electric vehicle. On a long trip, you can fill your gas tank with a five minute stop. How long would it take to fully recharge a battery?

    Reply
    • Countries like China would stand to benefit the most from the materials needed for an electric car. The US would depend on other sources for manufacturing. The supply of electricity can also be government controlled or even interrupted by cyber threats. Important to have more than one source of energy.

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      • Michael Z.

        Using tax dollars to incentivize the purchase of Electric Vehicles (EV) is an example of the inefficiency caused by crony capitalism and central government planning. If EV technology were competitive, the government would not have to subsidize the industry to make it viable. When the nation moved from horses and wagons to automobiles and trucks there was no need for the government to subside the internal combustion engine. Government bureaucrats who have never run a candy store think they know better than the free market, and are trying to get the public to prematurely adopt the EV. If the technology were superior, the heavy hand of government would not be needed to get people to forgo gasoline and diesel powered vehicles in favor of the EV.

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        • Robert G.

          You do realize that the government basically paid for the railroad system, remember the Robber Barons? It also paid for ALL the roads you drive on. The Defense Dept. invented the Internet. Government is the driver of most big changes.

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          • dave s.

            Roads are paid by gas taxes, registration fees and tolls. Also known as user fees. Usually not by the general fund. If society did go all electric-all electricity would need to have a user fee attached to pay for roadway upkeep. Incidentally the extra 1000lbs of batteries does an additional 1000lbs worth of damage to the roads. Recommend that all new cars be hybrid rather than full electric or full gas. Slight uptick in maintenance, large uptick (+50%) in mpg

        • The point of incentivizing owning an EV is to move away from gas powered vehicles to try and slow or reverse our climate change crisis. Sometimes it takes an incentive to help people change their bad habits and to do the right thing for our planet because everyone is money driven with major purchase decisions.

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        • Jackie H.

          Your so-called free market incentivizes pollution with the attendant health costs distributed among us all, at a higher price than the taxes needed to incentivize electric vehicles.

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          • Nick M.

            To incentivize EV use, the Gov’t should spend the money on scientists to design rapid charging systems; pray tell, are you willing to spend several hours waiting for your Ev to be charged?

          • And where do you think all that new electricity is going to come from and what will be the environmental impact of it?

        • WBSobe74

          Can we talk about the billions of dollars that U.S. gives in subsidies to trillionaires big oil? If some one is not in need of a hand out, it’s big oil. To produce a product that would eventually lead to the destruction of the world.

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          • Nick M.

            The Gov’t does not subsidize “big oil”.. The gov’t derives huge tax revenues from the oil produced in too many ways to enumerate here,

        • Mari V.

          Actually, the government has subsidized air polluting oil for decades.

          Reply
      • Stuart O.

        There is also a added cost of the purchase and installation of a charging station at your home. The actual charging of a car on 110v is absolutely not feesable.you can not charge a car to full charge on 110v in an 8 hr period

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    • Stuart F.

      How much time is required to fully recharge the battery of an electric car?

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      • charge at home via 120v ac outlet is usually about four miles per hour and about 10 miles per hour for standard 240v ac outlet with at least 20A.

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        • Janice M.

          I do not understand what you are saying. 10 miles per hour? It takes an hour of charging for every 10 miles that you want to travel? That cannot be so….

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          • Steve M.

            Let me preface this by saying, we’re talking about Level 1 and Level 2 charging speeds here, which are what’s typically used for daily commuting and errands. When EV drivers go on a trip beyond their car’s range, they’ll stop at Level 3 DC fast chargers that can fill the battery pack from 10-20% to 80% during a meal stop. This can take an hour in some EVs, but some newer ones are able to fill up to ~80% in 15 or 20 minutes.

            Yes, Dennis is saying that for every hour you’re plugged into a regular 120v 15-amp outlet, your EV will only gain enough charge to travel about 4 miles. That should give you some idea of just how much energy is contained in an EV’s battery pack. Think about how much power is consumed running a hair dryer or a space heater for several hours.

            It sounds slow, but even 120v charging works just fine for many EV drivers who leave their car plugged in for ~12 hours overnight. They wake up to an additional 45-50 miles of range which is enough for their daily commute and errands. It’s like an extra 1-1/2 or 2 gallons of gas magically appearing in your car’s tank every night.

            If instead of a 120v outlet, you have a 240-volt aftermarket EVSE installed, then for each hour it’s plugged in you’ll gain about 10-12 miles in most plug-in hybrid cars, or 22-26 miles each hour in most all-electric EVs. This is because full EV’s or “BEVs” typically have a 30-amp-capable 240 volt charger onboard, compared with only 15-amp-capable chargers on plug-in hybrids.

            If you also have 240v charging stations available at work or someplace you typically stop for an hour or so a few times a week, that can make it even easier to always have enough charge for your commute and other local driving.

    • We have a Nissan Leaf. If you can access a commercial charging station, which operates at around 300v, a 90 percent charge takes about an hour, a full charge a little longer. At home we have a 220v setup. A full charge takes about 2 hours.

      Reply
      • 1 HOUR? I don’t have 1 hour to fuel my vehicle. Let’s get real here folks. I have a life to live, not living my life around charging my vehicle.

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        • When we all have electric cars we will all have to schedule our car usage around chargingtimes.

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      • Jeffrey N.

        Most public chargers are level 2 220 volt. Fast chargers have been anticipated since I bought my first ev in 2017, but I have yet to see one. Ev’s are good for local travel, but I wouldn’t want to have to deal with the charging issue on a long trip. There’s already enough to deal with. Chinese company Nio is working on battery swap cars which is probably a more realistic solution. You drive in with the discharged battery and drive out with a fully charged battery.

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        • Stan T.

          Battery swap seems like a good idea if it can be made practical and affordable.

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          • Impossible, the battery is too large and too expensive, plus it takes too many hours to do so.

        • Steve M.

          “Fast chargers have been anticipated since I bought my first ev in 2017, but I have yet to see one.”

          There are thousands of fast chargers across the US, but they’re more spread out and less visible, mostly along highways for inter-city travel. There aren’t many near workplaces or stores like public level 2 chargers. One exception is the Electrify America chargers at many Wal-marts.

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      • iT’S painfully obvious that ‘safety concerns’ are nowhere mentioned in this ‘analyzing story and commentary’. .. Reviewing the several extremely serious issues of spontaneously-ignited frightening burst of fires (especially of Tesla’s ) are on the minds of the public!! Nearly 20 fires are under Fed investigation .. with loss of life !! … It is counter-productive not even to refer to these tragedies in this platform!

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        • And 20 gas-powered cars catch fire daily on average in America. I guarantee there is some loss of life there. Electric cars are much less likely to catch fire, which is why each electric car fire makes the news.

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    • I agree completely. If you happen to be stuck in traffic and run out of gas, they can bring gas to you. They can’t bring electric to you, which means a tow etc. And your right, just how long does it take to recharge a battery when you can get gas in under 5 minutes. I don’t think you can charge a battery that fast. Just how many times can you be late for work telling your boss “Oh I had to charge my vehicle .” before they get tired of hearing that. One other thing what if you come upon a charging station that is all filled up at the moment. How long do you have to wait then? Gas stations that are all filled up usually pumps are available in just minutes. Just a few things to ponder.

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      • You are unlikely to run of power due to being stuck in traffic. An EV only uses power when it is moving. That is the beauty of it.

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      • But YES they COULD!! … deliver ‘electrons’ on such demand! I’m referring not to the recharging of batteries, but of ‘super-capacitor’ technologies!

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        • And 20 gas-powered cars catch fire daily on average in America. I guarantee there is some loss of life there. Electric cars are much less likely to catch fire, which is why each electric car fire makes the news.

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      • Stuart O.

        There is also a added cost of the purchase and installation of a charging station at your home. The actual charging of a car on 120v is absolutely not feesable.you can not charge a car to full charge on 120v in an 8 hr period

        Reply
    • Kevin K.

      The ranges quoted in this article are under ideal conditions and don’t relate to real-world conditions. Let’s not forget that in an all electric vehicle, every accessory is powered by the batteries. If you run the heater in the winter, mileage goes down. The same thing happens when you use the AC. Headlights, entertainment system, etc. all take battery power.

      Reply
      • Perhaps ‘implicit’ to your topic is the idea that there might be benefits to ‘dual-power-sources’ … separate (and thus more costly!) systems for running those ‘extras’ ..

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    • Henry G.

      People are buying electric vehicles. Every vehicle they produce is sold. They can not build them fast enough. The American BIG 3 are dragging on EV’s because they are in bed with the American Petroleum Institute and BIG OIL. Nobody but rich people were buying Cell phones when they first came out.

      Reply
    • Robert S.

      I would consider an EV if I could fully recharge the battery from 20% to 100% in 10 minutes. It is dangerous to be sitting for an hour in the middle of the night in a deserted parking lot that has an EV charger. Most ev chargers are in these locations.

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      • Excellent point! And the most-recently published Tesla fire (which occurred while the vehicle was being charged over-night in the ‘under-home garage!) suggests that UNDER-SUPERVISED re-charging might be more dangerous than as seen at first ‘blush’!! Fortunately, the home-owners were both spared, tho house was burned to the ground!
        (Ref: https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2021/08/04/tesla-fire/ )

        Reply
  • Robert S.

    Spent-battery pollution and the tremendous toll that battery production mining imposes on our planet, are two reason for not wanting an EV. The average age of an American car on the road is 12 years. A 12 year old EV will be on its third battery. A Tesla battery cost $10,000 .

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    • where are you getting the electricity from the moon? No, you need to produce electricity, by oil or coal-fired station, and what happened to exchanged Batteries? The whole thing is political. If I want to visit my daughter it takes 10 hours, going by electric it will properly a day or two. so I have to look for a motel another expense, what happened if you get stuck in traffic in winter or in heat of Summer with no heat or AC.

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        • I’ve driven a Tesla for 8 years. When the battery is nearly out, the driver turns off heat or AC to save battery for a bit more range.

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      • Oil fired plants produce less than 1% of electricity generated in the US, and coal 19% (and falling). If we can combine increasing use of renewable energy in electricity production along with increased use of EVs it will be a net benefit to all of us.

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        • John F.

          Most electric production in the U.S. is not from coal, or oil, but Natural Gas.

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        • If we only use 1% of electricity generated in the US from oil, and 19% from coal it seems that will need to increase if we move to EVs not decrease. Wind and solar won’t replace that 20% and the electric usage in houses, businesses, etc isn’t decreasing because people drive EVs. Plus we have no understanding of what the electric consumption increase would be if we all drove EVs.

          Reply
  • Mark B.

    I purchased a Tesla Model 3 a year and a half ago, and have driven it for 27,000 miles. So far I’ve spent $0 on maintenance and repairs. I get 300+ miles of range when fully charged — and it’s a delight to drive past gas stations (especially in winter). I’ve taken dozens of long trips (400+ miles) and charging on the road has never been a challenge: the car’s navigation system automatically suggests charging stations en route, and every one I’ve used has been located in close proximity to food and restrooms – making the stop useful for other needs. Charging at home is simple. The icing on the cake is that the car is a joy to drive – electric cars accelerate quickly, and quietly. I will never purchase another gas-powered car.

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    • Rick D.

      Great news It is the future My relative has a Tesla and drove from Massachusetts to New Mexico without any issues. I tells you where the Charging Stations are.

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      • MANNY F.

        The average car buyer can’t afford Tesla pricing. Also, EV need to match your lifestyle. They certainly don’t match mine, and I think all things considered, they are no great improvement to the environment. I’m staying with internal combustion as long as I can.

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    • John M.

      How much did you pay for the Tesla and how many kwh does it take to fully charge your ev, and have you considered the EMF you are exposed to.

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      • Mark B.

        Hello John, our Telsa cost roughly the same as other cars we considered, and is much less expensive to drive – in part because electricity in our town comes primarily from solar & wind (10.4 cents/kwh). We anticipate stronger Federal incentives to install solar panels after the infrastructure bills are signed, and have determined that our roof will supply nearly all of our needs. Our Tesla home charger delivers 44 miles/hr of charging, so it’s really convenient to keep it charged. I’m not sure about the EMF exposure – I haven’t read anything about that factor yet. Thanks for bringing it up.

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        • I’d question where the electricity actually comes from and how much is actually produced by natural gas.

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    • Now this is one of the most useful posts I’ve seen in regards to this topic – all based upon an individual’s personal experience of owning such a vehicle type for several years. Personally I’ve no issue with going electric in time – and with time, both technology and the product should only get better – thanks to competition.

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  • peter B.

    If you want to drive across the country from New England to say San Francisco, there are areas in the Midwest and West that are out of range of the common EV!!! Also, if you wanted to take side trips it would not be possible! So Your upbeat discussion that EV’s are the answer is wrong! Until the 200-300 mile gap in EV Charging centers is fixed it is NOT an option!!!!

    Reply
  • Sara G.

    Charging TIME is also a significant concern. For example, the nearest public charging stations are in metered parking spots or grocery store parking lots. In both cases, the ratio of charging stations to parking slots is about 1 to 20. The average errand takes 20 minutes. Can the car charge fully in that time? Fueling a gasoline-powered car takes less than 16 minutes, for a range of 300+ miles. Can an EV charge fully in that amount of time? If the car sits unused for several days, as it might at a vacation destination, do the batteries hold their charge so one can get home again? These are the real obstacles, not a 27 mile daily commute plus overnight charging for a homeowner.

    Reply
    • Yes if it is a Tesla Model 3, they are fully capable of charging at a rate of 17 miles additional EV ranger per minute; so in sixteen minutes it can EV range add 273 miles of additional range

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  • Diane F.

    You can walk to a gas station to get a gallon of gas if you run out, but you can’t walk and get a gallon of electricity if your car runs dry.

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  • Biggest problem I see are the lack of charging stations and time to fully recharge the battery. Example, long trips. Many people travel from the northeast states to southern states like Florida in the winter. There are hundreds of gas stations along the main thruways, highways, etc with multiple pumps. Ten minutes or less to fill up and you are back on the road for 400 miles or more of driving until you have to stop to fill up again. With the typical electric car, you have to pull over after about 200 miles or less, probably have to wait on line for the next available charger and then wait for a lot longer than ten minutes to get a full charge. I predict a potential disaster with many trips taking a lot longer than anticipated with hours long delays at electric charging stations. I hope I am wrong.

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    • Henry K.

      That’s why, at this time, hybrids with large capacity batteries are the “stopgap answer”.

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    • Sheryl R.

      I agree totally,I use my car for vacations. Can travel 400 miles before I need to refuel, which takes 15 minutes max. Have a choice of stations, not enough choices for electric chargers

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  • Michael S.

    A big concern of mine is the amount of time it takes to recharge the battery on a trip. It only takes minutes to refill a gas tank. Even if a charging station is readily available I do not want to wait a couple of hours to recharge the EV.

    Reply
    • Mark B.

      Hi Michael, the Tesla supercharger stations are quick — I typically wait 20-25 minutes to fully charge my near-depleted batteries. I use the time to get lunch/coffee, etc, or walk our dog.

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  • Cathy H.

    My greatest concern about EVs is where are the batteries going to go when they reach end-of-life? It seems to me that the more EVs that are in use, the greater the environmental disaster that looms in our future. Regular cars are bad enough!

    Reply
    • Paul B.

      It seems to me that until all these logistical issues are resolved the typical 2 car family should go with one EV for daily shorter distance use and one gas powered vehicle for longer trips. This would go a long way towards the goal of 50% EV sales by 2030.

      Reply
  • Lorraine C.

    I tried a hybrid electric car at a dealership the last time I purchased a new car. I did not buy the hybrid because it had to be jump started each time I went for a test drive. Also, the car is so silent, I could not tell if it was on or off.

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  • Albin S.

    What about the longer term affects on our environment? The batteries are a real issue. How we generate electricity to charge the cars. Have we really saved anything? I doubt it.

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  • Paul A.

    Have been driving my Tesla Model 3 LR AWD for almost 3 years. It has gotten more reasonably priced . Technology has improved. It’s been a terrific and totally reliable vehicle. Range anxiety might be a concern but it’s not a factor that should determine EV vs Gas. Tesla has built a very smart tech savvy vehicle. It gives you plenty of warning for range concerns and does things itself to preserve energy and safely get you home or to a nearby charger. Tesla is a technology company and it’s cars and years of experience make a tremendous difference in safety and comfort.

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  • One item not covered in the report – time to recharge battery while on a trip and overnight charging is not an option. That time could include waiting for a charging stand to become available.

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  • I’m not considering an electric car. The environmental consequences of mining the elements needed for the batteries and the fact that those batteries will just end up in landfills is bad enough, but the limited recharging infrastructure, poor management of the electrical grid sources in the Northeast, reduced battery performance in cold weather, and my need to haul loads larger than a couple passengers all make me question why people are pushing this change so hard.

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    • because people are misinformed, It will be worse for the environment than any Car, the only problem with Cars is the small battery for the environment

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  • Everyone talks about how EV’s are better for the environment. However, the mining of the lithium for the batteries that power EV’s is terrible for the environment. And how will the disposal of used batteries be dealt with?

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    • Gary S.

      Tesla is working on IRON and SODIUM batteries if you read up on the latest goings on. They are trying to get away from lithium and move toward iron because there is PLENTY of that element.

      Reply
  • I drive a Honda Clarity, which should get a prize as the best car no one ever heard of. It is a PHEV so range anxiety doesn’t exist. 90% of the time I’m on pure EV and the car gets 47 miles on battery alone. For road trips I’ve got the engine and get >40 mpg. Plus I got the $7500 tax credit and a (now expired) state rebate of $2500. The car was cheaper that a gas model with those incentives.

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    • I agree completely. We have a Chevy Volt, a charging station in our garage, and solar panels to produce the electricity for our home (no electric bill for 7 years and the power company pays us for excess). GM decided to stop making the Volt. Bad decision. We will not buy a solely electric car because of the limitations many people have stated here. With the Volt, 90+% of the time we are using the electric motor. The 10% of the time we go beyond the electric range (close to 60 miles in summer and 35 miles in winter in MA) we do not need to think about charging. Most destinations are to cities without on street charging capacity or to locations in the wilderness without hope of having charging stations for a decade or more to come. There is the extra cost of 2 engines and more maintenance costs, but the freedom to go when and where you want without worry is worth it to us. Plus the overall amount of gas/fuel we use is negligible compared to a solely combustion car.

      Reply
  • Range anxiety… We have family in NC. NY to NC by our car (Audi Q5) requires only one stop. (With no traffic and a steady speed it can be done without stopping). Most electric cars would take 3 stops and add about about 1 to 2 hours to the trip. Electric vehicles that come close to the needed range are typically in the 6 figure category.

    Reply
    • Gary S.

      I will be driving from MA. to my Dad’s home in south western N.C. It is 883 miles by way of my GPS routing. I doubt very highly your Audi could make that trip on one tank! Most every car I have driven including my current Ford Escape with 4 cyl. engine makes 3 stops on that same trip! About 390 miles per fill up. So there you go.

      Reply
  • I don’t hear a scientific analysis of real carbon footprint. Manufacturing energy, battery toxicity, carbon sourced electricity to charge? I’ve had cars with 500 miles per tank. What’s the cost to install a 50 amp charging station at home??

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  • Debra A.

    Some fire departments won’t use jaws of life due to wiring harness lack of standards.

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  • The cost differential to break even based on annual savings of $600 is about $2,600 over 5 years and $4,600 over 10 years. This assumes a 5% interest rate. Another way to say this is the operating cost savings don’t justify the higher purchase price. Also, the cost savings don’t reflect the higher insurance costs on a higher value vehicle. They also don’t address potentially higher repair costs.

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  • LISA D.

    not everyone can afford a Tesla. There is no reason why we had to kill the pipeline
    in this country. As Americans we should have both choices. All these batteries are from mines in China and everywhere else. So we just make these countries richer . So much for the global awareness. When all these batteries are dead where are we dumping them do they go back to china and other countries? How about battery operated commerical airlines! you go first! NO THANKYOU

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  • I forgot the name of the make and model, but haven’t there been some electric cars that caused fires while they have been charging? What about the horrible electrical fires following a car crash that are nearly impossible for fire fighters to put out with water? How much of another fire fighting material (possibly foam?) would fire trucks be able to carry if the water coming out of hydrants is no longer an option for putting out a car fire? Electric vehicles also tend to be rather quiet, which presents a great hazard for hard-of-hearing, elderly, or disabled people who cannot timely move out of the way of a speeding electric car because they never heard it coming. Also, with these newer cars (not just electric cars), isn’t it harder for drivers to tell if they are really in park, and haven’t there been some terrible accidents because a car rolled away after the driver got out of the car?

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  • Teresa L.

    Since 60% of electricity is created by fossil fuels, what is the point of buying an EV?

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    • Not to mention transmission line losses from power plant to the charging station. Essentially a zero sum game? You still have pollution to put up with, even with wind and solar generators inefficiencies.

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  • I leased a Honda Clarity PHEV and was considering buying it when the lease ended recently. However, my trusted mechanic told me that parts are overly expensive and difficult to find, so I turned the car back in.

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  • Paul C.

    Part of the cost of fuel (gas/diesel) is for the road taxes that are a percent of the price. Many cities/states are beginning to charge hundreds of dollars a year at registration for electric vehicles to compensate for their not paying for road use at the pump.

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  • Stirling N.

    The greatest problem with electric vehicles is “out.” Let me explain.

    For everything that a gasoline-powered car consumes, there is an “out” where the consumer does not have to think about it. It goes someplace, the landfills and huge junk cars are out of sight. A normal gasoline vehicle owner does not think about them and can thus be loud and whiny about the absence of “out” for the electric vehicle. The reality is of course that there is actually a lack of space to put gasoline-powered cars once they have completed their views, and every person who works for the local or state government news and is tearing their hair out. However, there are actually problems with “out” for electric vehicles: the problem of recycling batteries is a good example, of an entire sub-industry needs to be created for this purpose. But the counterexamples with a gasoline-powered cars are numerous, but the consumer does not have to think about them.

    There is of course true misinformation (called “lies” if told by private individuals but the word is correct for oil industry shills.) For example, getting from Boston to Florida is quite easy. There are chargers for long-range. More than half of the comments are “misinformation.” These are put out to confuse individuals into not buying an electric vehicle, but only work as long as the stupidity of the public is in play. When there are truly competitive cars, we will have electric vehicle shills combat these, there just is not the market for them yet because only the intelligent are truly in the market for a car that runs on electricity – are slightly too expensive and only in competition with BMWs and other high-end vehicles. The stupid and the money-conscious consumer buys a secondhand vehicle. It is better value. This requires a sub-industry because the electric car does not have a secondhand industry to speak of, again the power of disposing of the batteries is basically the cost of a car, so there is no value in a secondhand electric vehicle. This means that there are no takers in the industry. And remember, the number of people willing to borrow money to create an industry is important.

    What this means is that in the next few years a tipping point will occur and the high-end consumer will see the advantage of electric because they have money to spend now to reap the windfall of benefits later on. The average buyer does not have this ability, instead they borrow money to buy a car. This is actually a brother or proposition, but the average buyer does not have a choice on the matter.

    Yes, my next car will be electric. But I understand why the average consumer does not wish to participate: our new subindustries to deal with the “out” problem, there is no secondhand market for electric vehicles, the yield curve of profit is against the average buyer, and there are shills who tell “misinformation” to anyone who will listen. Any one of these might be surmountable but the forces of gasoline-powered vehicles are well entrenched. This is why the average consumer does not want to be on the forward edge of the electric vehicle revolution. It also means that people who do have the money will start to buy in droves because the returns are there for the upper-end consumer.

    Reply
    • Uh, no. Look at the top ten cars traded in for Tesla Model 3’s. Yes, some luxury brands. But also the very luxurious Toyota Prius and Honda Accord and Civic. If you look at even five-year cost of ownership, Tesla beats all those cars. Reason? Much lower maintenance and fuel costs.
      Also, there is very much a secondhand market for electric vehicles. Look on any of the car resale websites. Battery recycling is already a thing, and soon to be much more of a thing. Road trips are not a problem— you just fast charge while you eat, or level 2 charge overnight if you are at a hotel or RV park where you can plug in. Yes, it takes a bit more planning than a gas car trip , but only a bit.

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  • Daniel H.

    I bought a Honda Hybrid back in 2008 and paid $5000 more for it that the comparable gas model. Owned it for 5 years and 80,000 miles until the battery needed to be replaced. The battery was $4000 for a refurbished one as a new battery was not available through the dealer. Putting in a battery at that cost made the car worth way more than book value. I ended up trading the car in for far less than book value due to not replacing the battery. In the long run, owning that car cost me more money than if I bought the gas model. No more EV or Hybrids for me!

    Reply
    • That was no accident, coincidence, mistake.
      The auto industry has dragged its feet in every possible way.

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  • Sunny B.

    Here’s some points not mentioned:
    The Rare Earth minerals needed are mostly in China so we’d be giving loads of profit to the country that sent us the virus and wants to replace us as world leader – and our Dollars as world currency.

    There is a tremendous electro-magnetic force surrounding the car and I think also IN the car. And the health effects aren’t known.

    If there’s a car fire, there’s no research on the effect of that.

    Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of Congo are two of the top 10 countries in the world for lithium reserves. Congo uses slave labor.

    Tesla, whose share price has climbed by around 700% this year, started delivering the first vehicles from its gigafactory in Shanghai in December 2019. It already sources lithium – an ingredient in EV batteries – from China’s Ganfeng Lithium, one of the world’s top lithium producers

    Re the electric car where I said there were some negatives.

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  • Leon K.

    The technology is simply not as convenient, the charging times are absurdly long compared to filling up a gas tank, and one has to search with anxiety on a long trip for a compatible charging station and wait hours to recharge. We are twenty years away from the EV displacing most conventional cars.

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  • issichar b.

    The inly thing I can see in the very near future is battery disposal material, this factor needs more explanation on the part of the manufactures, and the effects of improper disposals

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  • Marie F.

    Where are we going to get all the electric power? Solar or Wind? Not reliable enough for me. The batteries are another concern. Where are they dumping these old used batteries?

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    • Uh, so you don’t rely on the electric grid to keep the food in your fridge fresh? Electricity is reliable, and everywhere.
      Batteries are very recyclable.

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  • Sign Z.

    EV is for the rich and famous, who can just use it to brag about how they are fighting climate change and of course they can also fly private jets for a change from time to time. you know full well that EV is out of reach for average people.

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  • Towing capacity is also a concern. I take several trips a year to my summer house, which is off the grid, towing a trailer, a 280 mile trip. EVs can’t handle that, at least not yet.

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  • I don’t understand why they can’t design solar panels into the hood, roof and trunk so that the battery can constantly be charging.

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  • Chris T.

    I had a hybrid and got rid of it so that I could reduce my carbon footprint. I replaced it with an extremely efficient internal combustion engine (Subaru) which gets 40 mpg and a 700 mile range. My hybrid had a 400 mile range at 37 mpg. EVs have a place in our overall transportation model, but there is a saturation point point where if too much of the fleet is electric the problems outweigh the benefits. As an example, if my apartment complex were to put a metered power point at each parking spot the power delivery company would need to run at least two more transmission lines into my community. This problem would exist throughout if every homeowner is now fueling up at home. The actual delivery of electricity would be hampered by line capacity. If the people infrastructure is built then the supply needs to increase in an efficient way. That would most likely lead to carbon emitting power generation plants needing to be brought on line to meet the demand. The green energy supplements in generation of electricity are wonderful, but they will not be adequate to fuel the fleet. Right now, for example, during heat waves customers are asked to reduce electricity use. Don’t get me wrong, EV’s will help us in the long run, but they are not the answer. A combination of EVs and extremely efficient internal combustion engines is probably the most realistic approach.

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    • I don’t understand why they cannot build EVs to self power themselves by way of solar panels or similar idea attached right to the vehicle. Maybe that would make the car heavier but there must be a way to make lighter solar panels to fit vehicles.

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  • I would like for my next car to be an EV (currently driving 13-year-old car which continues to run like a top). One disconcerting issue is the number of spontaneous combustion fires these cars are causing. Recently GM issued a recall for Chevy Bolts because of a fire hazard.

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    • Sheryl R.

      There is also a problem for first responders in putting out a fire in these cars!

      Reply
      • Tesla has made it easy for first responders to deal with fires, but there aren’t that many. Remember, 20 gas cars a day catch fire in America.

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  • I think your article naively promotes EVs long before the technology, or society is truly ready for them. A similar situation for solar powered houses, why not make everyone have to have a solar powered home. In all this promotion, no one mentions how all these electrical demands will be sourced, using what—.?? solar, oil, natural gas, coal, or Nuclear, etc..—for which there is some environmental group that will oppose each, on a hose of environmental reasons—beautification, land purchase & use, endangered species, environmental pollution, etc.,… When AAA supports such a technological change you should address the Macro-Mico Economic impacts as well, not just the sparkle of new technology. Where are the Government IR&D programs of the past, which disappeared, to jointly share funding (Government & Industry) for the kind of R&D programs needed, to mature and standardize the technology, and not just have industry go it alone developing company company focused, profitable, point solutions????—Enough Said time for some positive action, not a lot of opinion, we all have one…

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    • MANNY F.

      You hit the nail right on the head! Where’s all this electricity going to come from. Also, I find AAA often spouts the same dogma of liberal political groups in this country. Ner’ a conservative viewpoint from them…

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  • Donna M.

    Interesting info on EV’s. Do you pay at the EV Chargers scattered all around the US like you pay-at-the-pump now for gas? I have never found electricity to be cheap. With the high price of the car, battery & charging costs, I may not be able to afford an EV. Plus, we vacation in Canada a lot. I would need to know where charging stations are in Canada.

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    • Canada’s well ahead of us on this account. And hydro power is very available and cheap there. They send a lot of electrical power our way — HydroQuebec to the U.S. northeast, in particular.

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  • Robert G.

    Major impediment for buying hybrids: In the US 80% of the people are either poor or living from paycheck to paycheck. Climate change people have not found a way to pay for 100% conversion to electric cars or even 20%. Good luck with the economy.

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  • Charles H.

    A major problem I have is being able to flee disasters. A few years ago hurricanes swept through Florida. Now if you were in Miami most EV’s would not have the range to get to the Georgia border before running out of juice. Now if you ran the a/c (needed in Florida) the range would even be shorter. Now you have to wait 12 hours to recharge, if you can get to a charger. After the storm there was no power in most of the state, so how could you get back? What good is an EV? You could get gas – difficult but available. The powers that be have to answer this evacuation problem as this has happened more than once – Texas, Louisiana, super storm sandy, etc.

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  • Robert G.

    This is my second Toyota Prius Plug-in and i reccomend it highly. The ability to use the gas engine to extend trips is invaluable and the EV part makes going around town easy. I go to the gas station about once every two weeks and put less than 7 gallons to fill i.

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  • Electric vehicles at this point in time r a waste of money and do nothing for the environment. Gas engines today r super efficient and give off so little co…electric vehicles have a bigger carbon footprint

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  • The reasons we won’t buy an electric car are listed, but for us, the priority is different – #1 range anxiety, #2 lack of charging stations, #3 price, #4 charging time . We drive R/T from Florida to Massachusetts, ~1400+ miles, several times a year and it’s grueling on our 60+ bodies. We do it in 2 1/2 days now. The moderately priced hotels we stay at do not have charging stations. The range of these vehicles is concerning. We have often been stuck in I-95 traffic for hours at time in the Virginia-DC-Maryland-Delaware and New York areas in hot weather with our AC on, how long would our battery last then. Even if we charged moments before hitting a traffic jam (which no one expects), we’d be panicking. We have sweated even running out of gas at times, let alone having batteries to worry about. We refuel now before we hit 1/4 tank due to the unexpected and once we came very close to empty sitting in a very long traffic jam, how many stops & time would we need with an EV to maintain this 1/4 charge? No way would we feel safe in an EV today. We might go with a Hybrid someday.
    Also, our condo in Massachusetts does not have plug-in stations, so short of running a 100’+ extension cord out our 3rd floor window…..
    Today, EVs seem fine for mostly short distance travel only, AND assuming you have both charging capability at home and at ALL your destinations. We’re a long way from that as a country.

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  • As noted above, the cost per charge/watt/mile is not discussed. Do you shop around for better rates? What is the cost to drive 200 miles, for instance? What are the repair/maintenance costs? What are the costs to install chargers in your house? What are the effects of temperature on battery performance? Gas powered vehicles pay taxes on fuel that are supposed to be devoted to road maintenance (even though we know it goes into the general fund). How do electric vehicles pay their “fair share” to maintain roads etc.? Efforts to pass a “per mile” tax will only be added onto the gas engine owner, not replace the onerous taxes on fuel. Perhaps, like Diesel fuel, they will have special rates for EVs when filling. Lastly, get rid of the tax deductions unless you offer similar deductions to those that want/need an internal combustion driven vehilce.

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  • Elizabeth B.

    I would love to own an EV but it’s impossible as I live in a condo where there is NO plan to install charging stations for the vehicles we park here. We have NO garages and no way to charge these vehicles. Until there is some way for condo Boards to get funding to install charging stations, this will not happen to condos like ours for many, many years. I do hope the Fed. Infrastructure Bill will address this situation.

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  • We bought a Tesla Model 3 in late 2019, although we weren’t initially expecting to. We were looking for a second car to use for everything except long trips (with three teen/young adult kids, the three-row ICE minivan remains our family travel vehicle).

    We started by trying to shop for plug-in hybrids and EVs that still had more available tax credit. If anyone but Tesla wants to sell more electric vehicles, they need to fix the shopping experience.

    We live in NJ. To find EVs to look at from conventional dealerships, we had to go to individual dealer websites to hunt for vehicles in stock. Many dealerships required contact information in order to check inventory — months later I was still getting calls and emails from some of them. No dealership near us had more than one hybrid or EV in stock, even in brands that offer multiple options (e.g. Hyundai). To look at multiple options would require multiple trips in different directions from our home.

    So we picked one dealership and went to look at the one hybred in stock. We waited in the showroom until the one sales person who knows anything about electric cars was free (a garrulous enthusiast…like car shopping with my late father). Then we waited while they fetched the one hybrid from some far corner of their lot, and did our test drive. We left to consider if we wanted to trek to another dealership 30 minutes away to see another midsized hybrid/EV. Also the car we test drove had an interior and driving experience that left us disappointed and feeling like we would be “settling” on every other dimension in order to be environmentally friendly.

    Since Tesla was nearby, we went in on a whim, although they weren’t on our target list (since they had far less rebate available). Everything was available to see. Knowledgeable staff. Easy shopping. A car that my spouse fell in love with, at a comparable price. It was like shopping in an Apple store after rummaging in the remainder bins of ICE-focused dealerships. So we soon made our decision and took delivery a few weeks later. Got a level2 charge outlet for home (saving $500 by installing a high capacity outlet, essentially a 50 amp dryer outlet, rather than a Tesla branded station).

    If other brands want to sell electric cars, they must figure out how to make the experience less painful.

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  • Alexander F.

    What will happen when they all run out o juice at the same time on a busy highway in a snowstorm?

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  • Craig E.

    I am glad to see there are many who like me question the rush to push everyone into an electric vehicle box. I am most concerned about the chance of fire even though I park outside. The other question I have is repair bills and how they match up with the bills I get now. After having driven down to Cape Cod a couple of times this summer, I would wonder about keeping a charge in a traffic jam. And why would I want to not use the a/c when the temperature is hot outside.

    Reply
    • Remember a car running on electric is not using/wasting electricity while stopped in traffic, only what you choose to use for ac or heat. A gas car would waste energy idling while stopped getting zero miles per gallon.

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    • Repairs for an EV should be less than an ICE. No oil changes for one, few parts for another. Although the AC will, of course, use power from the battery, you are unliekly to run out of juice in a traffic jam since the car does not use power when it is not moving

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  • Manny F.

    The elephant in the room concerning widespread EV use is the electrical infrastructure. The added burden from charging electric vehicles combined with a move to stop the use of fossil fuels for home heating cannot be supplied without upgrading the whole system from the power source to the outlet. Not to mention, the need for more power plants, as solar and wind sources cannot provide the electricity needed. The existing system can’t even keep up today during high demand. Maybe someday but push will come to shove for power demands with the fairyland desire to go all electric.

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  • Stan T.

    Not mentioned in the “Range Anxiety” discussion is the effect of heating the passenger cabin for electric cars. In the Northeast, using electric power to provide heat for the occupants is a significant power drain that can easily cut the range in half, depending on outdoor temperature. In a gas-powered car, cabin heating comes from the waste heat of the engine, so there’s effectively no loss of range as a result.

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    • Thank you. Had no idea this is so. Thought heat was taken physically right off the battery.

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  • It’s about the price and the odd design. The industry, deeply in bed with the petroleum industry, has sabotaged electric and hybrid vehicles in both ways. They don’t have to cost that much more. And, to be sure, we’ve gotten used to the looks.

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  • Canada’s well ahead of us on this account. And hydro power is very available and cheap there. They send a lot of electrical power our way — HydroQuebec to the U.S. northeast, in particular.

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  • We have a plug-in hybrid (Honda Clarity) that we love. Mainly we use electric (I have a short commute), but enjoy the security of having a back-up gas engine for those rare long trips. We also have solar panels, so our “fuel” expense is quite low.

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  • What about highway accidents or other reasons for traffic closure. Recently was in highway backup for over 2 hours. Does stop and go for 2 hours still use energy from battery at the same rate?

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  • Necessary infrastructure just doesn’t exist: I live in a residential part of a city. I don’t have a driveway, and I don’t own the parking space in front of my house, so even if I put in some charging mechanism, I couldn’t be sure I could use it. Charging stations for city residents (that don’t live in apartments with garages) is just impractical at this point.
    Charging time is a big concern. You’d have to plan more carefully to make sure your car was fully charged at all times. Finding out that you don’t have a sufficient charge when you get in your car would be really annoying.
    Range anxiety is also a big concern. Running out of juice – or needing a multi-hour charge – during a trip would be a huge issue.
    Longer term, some of the issues others have raised – e.g., battery disposal – would be a deterrent, but presumably (if important enough) it is a soluble problem.

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  • Robert W.

    At this time there are many obstacles to purchasing an EV: price, limited manufacturers, service & parts availability, body/vehicle type — it goes on & on, not to mention limited recharging stations and time to recharge if you are traveling further than a full charge can cover (round trip). However, your article cites one laughable reason to consider buying an EV — something that any thinking person would consider a detriment — that being an endorsement by President Biden.

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  • John C.

    I have a Chevy Volt and the beauty of the car is I get 50mi/charge and a backup gas generator for when I run out of electricity. 50miles of juice gets me to work and a charger at work gets me the juice I need to get home. For longer trips like to the lake on the weekend or to visit relatives, the gas generator kicks on and gets used when I need it. My gas gauge stays unchanged all week long. This works for me, and I want Chevy to make more vehicles with this technology. I’m getting ~ 250miles of driving / gallon of gas. I would not buy a full on EV right now, but maybe in the future. I feel that economics more than politics will drive this debate and the future outcome.

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  • Robin L.

    I’d be concerned how much more the battery would be drained by hills or mountain driving where I live. Also we get lower milage in the snow with our gas powered vehicles–does anyone know how snow affects the milage with an electric vehicle?

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  • Phil G.

    Price is still a consideration. You estimate $600 more if you drive 15k miles a year. Then you say most people drive an average of 27 miles/day. That works out to less than 10k miles per year, negating 5k miles worth of fuel savings per year.

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  • William G.

    How did EVs do down in Texas last winter when the grid went down for days?

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  • In 2028 we considered a Tesla X for our next vehicle. It was a quiet vehicle that had enough room, speed and was a vehicle that electronically was up to date everyday. The range of the battery was what stopped us. A visit to see relatives on a great day could be 10 hours one way too n a gas vehicle with one stop for fuel. With the range of 300 miles and my trip being 620 miles, the vehicle charging added at least an hour to ride if you could find a charging station where we would stop for lunch. I have now seen a lot more public charging stations in my area but it’s not like a gas station

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  • Joseph L.

    IF you only drive locally an EV might make sense BUT I drive to Dunedin Florida, 1200 miles. I don’t want to have to take 3-4 days longer just to charge my EV from a station powered by Fossil Fuels. To me a Prius Hybrid or such makes far more sense, 58 miles to a gallon AND if they would take the damn Ethanol out of the gas we would get FAR better mileage. The Corn produced Ethanol is a payoff to the Farmers but it reduces your mileage by over 10%, so you actually use MORE fuel to got the same distance, as Mr. Spock says, “ILLOGICAL”.

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  • Burt F.

    On Cape Cod electricity cost 25c/kw making gas cheaper until $3.35 a gallon.

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  • Nathaniel G.

    I don’t understand a lot of the electric car comments. To be clear I am a huge proponent of clean air, and clean water. Fossil fuels are terrible for the air, and water quality. The production of fossil fuels, transporting fossil fuels, and burning fossil fuels are all very poor for the environment with the exception of burning natural gas. Electricity comes from many sources, and some are much cleaner than others. I do also have solar panels on my roof, and I own a community solar farm producing credits on my friends, and family members utility bills at a cost less than buying it directly from the utility company.

    I have a 2015 Model S, and my wife has a 2016 Model X. The Model S used could be purchased for less than 50K today. It’s not cheap, but it is actually a better car today than when I bought it because of the software updates.

    Cost of travel for me is very little. I have a time of use meter and at night it costs 3-5cents per kwh. My car has an 85kwh battery. To fill it at home it costs me about $4. This will get me about 180 miles in the winter, and 250 miles in the summer. It costs me about $1 in electricity to drive 50 miles.

    In terms of performance, and range the only negative I have had is on those long trips. Daily driving is actually less inconvenient since I don’t have to go to a gas stationg, and just plug in in my driveway, or garage. The fast chargers are free for me since we have free supercharging for life, but they charge at a rate of 100 to 350 miles of driving per hour of charging. It charges fastest if the battery is warm, and almost empty.

    The last comment stated that driving 1200 miles would take an extra 3-4 days. That is nowhere near close to reality. The car will actually tell you how long it will take using it’s navigation system. I live in Central New York. Google maps says it would take me 20 hours to get to Dunedin, and the car navigation says 26 hours. It would take about 6 hours longer or 30% longer using my car. The newer electric vehicles charge faster, and have a larger battery so they would take significantly less time than 26 hours to do the same trip.

    There was a comment that the plug in hybrid was better than battery electric vehicle. That is true with range anxiety, but not maintenance, space in the vehicle (the front trunk adds space), or cost of energy since electricity is cheaper than gas most places.

    In stop and go traffic the battery uses very little energy, and is much more efficient than a gas car. Most of the energy used in that scenario is heating or cooling the cabin.

    There was a question about risk of the car catching fire. Gas cars catch on fire more frequently than electric cars. There are about 150,000 fires from gas cars in the US every year. After there was news about a few Teslas catching fire I starting asking people, and spoke to quite a few people who knew somebody who had a car fire, or had one themselves in my small area of 250,000 residents.

    There is a very extensive fast charging map on plugshare, and the Tesla supercharging map is at supercharge.info.

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  • Frank N.

    According to a NY times article, the average US household has 2.28 cars. 35% have more than 3. If each 220V charger requires 30 amps, that would be at least 90 amps just for 3 cars and 120 amps for 4. These homes will use more electricity at night than during the day and that is just for their cars. What about the appliances and central air? Would some overload a 150 amp panel at night? How do you get cars close to 3-4 chargers? Not everyone has a 2 car garage and even if they did, that would require at least two outdoor chargers. What do you do if your daily one way commute is 20+miles? Work requires longer hours, commute time and all, you might only get 7-8 hours per night to charge. Most job will not litter their parking lots with charging stations anytime soon. You might find yourself with needing to not drive on a weekend day or stop at a fast charger every week. We barely have enough time now on the weekend to accomplish all we do and now we will need that time just to charge a car. Sure, EV need less maintenance but they require more of your time. How much does that cost you? Let’s add the cost to add these chargers to a home, add the amps to the house and these chargers will take time to charge a car from 20% to full. From my experience with lithium batteries it has been stated that lithium batteries can only take so many recharge cycles regardless if that is from 20% or 80% to full. Each charge decreases the amount they can take the next time. If you look at Engineering Explained on YouTube, he did a cross country trip with an BEV. I think it took an extra 8 hours to accomplish. Time is money. Why would I want to incur an extra half a day for a cross country trip? Solar impacts the land requiring large area to accumulate a low energy dense medium – sunlight and the energy currently absorbed is only 20 or less of the total. All those solar panels displaces plants and animals, kills raptors and other soaring birds. Same is true for wind turbines.

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    • Mari V.

      You’re very unlikely to need to charge all cars at once, just like you’re very unlikely to need to gas up ALL of your cars at once.

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  • Frank N.

    What would it take to do battery swapping? Yes, that would making ‘refilling’ and EV faster but how many people today fill up at a station? How much room does the station need to store all those swapped batteries while they are recharged? How do I ensure I get a good one? They will need the ability to test these batteries and ensure a full charge. What happens to the energy that is still in the battery if I swap before the pack is ’empty’? Will I only be paying for the energy above what I drop off in the previous battery or will I always be paying for a ‘full tank’? This may cause many to push the packs to use up most/all of a charge to get their monies worth. This will degrade them faster. If it takes 30-40 minutes to fully charge a car battery at a level 3 charger and let’s add 5 min to test it for a total of 35 – 45 min/ pack. If it takes 3-5 min to fill up a car(published average) and a station has 4 pumps(very small station), they can fill 9-15 cars over 45 min period PER PUMP. these EV stations would need at least 15-20 batteries available per swap out bay (some spare in case one goes bad or cannot take a charge, etc.). Who is going to build that infrastructure, deliver that much energy and deliver batteries/pickup spent ones so that people can stop at a station and pick up a fully charged pack within 3-5 mins? What do you think that is going to cost? What if they offer various sizes of batteries? Now you will need that many times the number of of sizes. What do you do with your car if they decide to change pack configurations or your configuration is not ready at that EV station? OK, they offer you a chord to charge. Or maybe the ask you to leave it and they offer you a gas powered loaner!! So to replace 4 pumps, you will need to have on hand 60-80 batteries that are the size of the space between the wheels of your current car/truck/SUV. That is going to take a lot of room. Also, what happens if something goes wrong? Lithium loves to burn. 60-80 batteries for the 4 bays all on charge at various states of charge will create one hell of a fire.

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    • Battery swapping would be cool, because you wouldn’t have to pay for the new Tesla battery @ $15K. Where do these batteries go anyway in their afterlife?

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  • I haven’t heard so many half-baked excuses and arguments since I last read about the antivax world. I would say let’s not politicize EVs and sound environmental practices, but that ship has sailed (or motored off).

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  • Maybe families should move back together for a more sustainable life and communities, minimizing travel period. Look at the mental illness in our society due to transience and disconnection. COVID brought that reality home.

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  • Here’s why I am not buying an electric car:
    1.) The manufacturing of the battery causes more pollution then driving a electric car could ever resolve.
    2.) I don’t want to have to sit somewhere for long periods of time to charge up while traveling (I see guys at gas stations charging up who were there when I got there, looked like they had been there a long time, and were still sitting there after I gassed up, cleaned all my windows, checked my oil, shopped, and went to the bathroom).
    3.) The batteries have a shelf life that means more pollution to manufacture the replacement puls a hefty mechanic bill, where I can buy and replace a regular battery on my own in less then an hour.
    4.) The batteries require proper usage maintenance – if you constanty overuse and overcharge it the battery life is quickly diminished so you have to always be aware of how you are using and charging.

    In comparrison for my reguar car I only have to do the periodic maintenance of checking the oil and water with an occassional tune up.

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    • 1. Not true.
      2. You don’t sit while your car fast charges. You eat, shop, use the restroom. You can’t do anything else while pumping gas into your car.
      3. EV batteries generally last the lifetime of the car, and have long warranties. They are not comparable to your gas car’s lead-acid battery.
      4. This is not as difficult as it sounds, nor is it so different from a gas car. Driving on fumes often is not good for a gas car. Charging all the way up and draining it all the way down is not how anyone typically drives an EV. The car has a setting that limits how far you charge for everyday driving, easily overridden for the occasional road trip.
      I hardly call that maintenance. My electric car has many fewer moving parts than your gas car. No oil changes or tune-ups necessary. Just rotate the tires.

      Reply
  • I will only buy an EV vehicle that uses hydrogen fuel cells instead of batteries, and that only when we build a network of hydrogen refill stations that is big enough.

    Reply

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